1/28/09

My garden has very few weeds

Hate me if you must, but it won't change anything. A tiny bit of Oxalis pes-carpae pops up now and then. Some Parietaria judaica may sprout near the fences. From my neighbor's yard, Hedera canariensis and Ligustrum lucidum sometimes volunteer in mine. In a small garden, these weeds are easy to spot and pull right away. They never get very big. So, occasionally I may have a few weeds. Weedlings. Weed control is my lowest priority.

When I volunteer at the Botanical Garden however, it's usually all about weeds. And that's what I did yesterday--weeding at the Botanical Garden. Weeding can be a pleasant enough activity. Do you agree? Depending on how you weed, or the nature of the weeds you're pulling, weeding can be very focused, detail-oriented work, or rough, fast and indiscriminate. Yesterday I did mostly the former kind--pulling bits of chickweed out of the Checkerbloom, pinching thin blades of grass out of the Douglas iris, carefully digging out whole crowns of Ehrharta trying not to damage the crown of the plant next to it.

After an hour I was in a very relaxed state, my brain humming with alpha waves. By the time I finished some hours later, I was in so deep it took me a half-hour to "wake up" again. I meandered around the place looking at small things, close up.

Romneya coulteri seed heads.

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Currant buds.

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Glints of red (Mahonia aquifolium).

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In accordance with my mental state, I wasn't thinking about blog photography; I didn't take a lot of pictures. Before I left I did take some pictures of the areas I weeded.

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My instructions were to "pick and lay", that is, lay everything I picked back down with the roots up. It's too early for in the season for grass seed, and the volume of weed seeds already banked in the Botanical Garden is far too large to overcome anyway. No need to worry about that. Too tight an area to mulch with chips, so I used the weeds as mulch to keep the soil from running off during the next rains, if there are any "next rains".

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Before:

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After:

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Here are some other, larger things I noticed before I left for the day.

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Leptospermum laevigatum

Garrya elliptica

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9 comments:

gardenerprogress/Catherine said...

Weeding can be a little relaxing if you are in the right state of mind. Are these gardens in Golden Gate Park?

chuck b. said...

Yes, the Botanical Garden is in GG Park. Hang around this blog for any length of time and you will become extensively familiar with it.

Michelle said...

Weedlings! teeheehee, cute little petite baby weeds. And you can even name them all.

I haf Veeds! (use your best governator accent here)Too many to name and all of them thriving. And they all come baaack, time and again.

Thanks for the stroll in the park, everything looks like it's ready to burst out in bloom or greenery, lovely!

Oh, and if Strybing doesn't need you....

lisa said...

I enjoy weeding very much, especially when I can get to it early in the season and mulch over my handiwork. I find it relaxing too, and I fully understand how you can get into the "zone". If I could select an activity for "myself with dementia" as an old lady, it would be either weeding or coloring with crayons.

Frances said...

Hi Chuck, I don't hate you for having no weeds, I admire what a good caretaker you are of your garden. And of botanical garden too. Being detail oriented, that kind of sit down and get comfortable fine tuned weeding is the kind I like best, like weeding the moss in the back corner, it can't be hurried and is so relaxing. Good for you and for the gardens.
Frances

Christopher C. NC said...

My garden has no weeds. No weedlings. Nothin, nada, zilch. Not a weed to be seen any where.....For now.

You sure aren't one to loll about. Got right back to weeding at the Botanical Garden.

Monica the Garden Faerie said...

Is it Strybing where you volunteer? It's one of my favorite gardens. I don't mind weeding... because my garden is large and there is still room between plants, weeds happen. (And don't get me started on buckthorn seedlings, which spread from the adjoining nature area, good lord!). I notice people with tighter plant growth have feeder weeds, and one day I hope to be one of them.

queerbychoice said...

My garden has horrible weeds - mainly annual bluegrass at this point. I don't think it would ever be weedless even if I spent every second all year long out there pulling weeds.

ArtSparker said...

I love the way that little hummingbird is right out on the end - Reminds me of something albert Pinkham Ryder said about art-making, that one should be like a caterpillar at the end of a blade of grass, feeling in the air...